Legal Education was offered for the first time by the Transvaal University College, the forerunner of the University of Pretoria, in 1908. The Faculty of Law was formally founded in 1918. Over the years the Faculty's alumni and staff have served, in South Africa and other countries, in the highest positions in government, the legal profession, business and civil society, and a range of other capacities. They have risen to the level of head of government and chief justice, and in several countries have become cabinet ministers; judges of the highest courts; parliamentarians; leaders of the different branches of the organised legal profession; business leaders; university vice-chancellors; and many others.
From its inception, former students and staff members of the University of Pretoria have served on the South African Constitutional Court.
Not often is a faculty of law in a position where it is has both the opportunity and the capacity to have a direct impact upon the country and continent where it is situated, and as such upon the global pursuit of the rule of law. The Faculty of Law of the University of Pretoria, in its centenary year in 2018, has established itself as a central role-player in the South African legal system, and as a gateway between a unique network of African law faculties and the rest of the world. At the Faculty of Law we challenge ourselves to use this unique position to provide leadership through our students and staff in a quest to establish more effective and just legal systems in South Africa and on the Africa continent, in order to enable our societies to pursue the goals of development, security and justice.
We believe that there is room, and indeed a compelling need, for advanced legal education and research on the Africa continent, and it is in this context that we want to join forces with others on the continent and in the rest of the world who share the ideal to forge a new social compact, based upon the ideal of a just, effective and responsive legal order; to open up a new future for our country and continent; and to look beyond the horizon to the distant dream of all that we can become.